So we have been in our home now since December, LOVING it and starting to think of the "next" projects now that we know more about what we like, need, etc. One of the things that has come up is the office space upstairs (11x11) is a bit crowded and with the doors closed that room tends to get hot during the day (78 vs 74 in the rest of the house..and climbing) The other issue is that during the day if I need to speak on phone with customer, even with those doors closed, I know I can hear the tv in the next room / comes across as not terribly professional. With the times we live in, will be working more from home going forward so I am thinking of moving my primary office space downstairs. So...here is the questions, thoughts and overall suggestions I am hoping to get feedback on! The current plan is to wall off about 2/3rds of the basement to be man cave / office / gaming space. I have a pretty good plan for that, but the issue is the ceiling area. I probably would be fine as is... but have to admit if I have clients come over (tax business / accounting), a nice ceiling / drywall would just look better overall. As you can see in my pictures, the heat/ac ductwork is overhead and all very nicely insulated/wrapped, etc. My question is...can I replace those with "slimmer" profile ductwork? Without doing the exact math, I assume a say 8" round pipe could funnel the same air as say a 3"x10" rectangle duct? Thus gaining me several extra inches overhead? I actually do not hit my head on anything at 5'9", have not measured it but I am guessing for the most part well over 6' to bottom of even the biggest ducts but if I was to put in drop ceiling that low, it would be "too low" and feel cramped / odd. If I say did JUST around the ducts that low and the rest of the ceiling was up closer to the ceiling that would give me more head room but "look weird" to have all these odd / square areas? Thus the thought of trying to replace the ducts with lower profile (and wider) so maybe I could end up at close to 7' or so for even height for drop ceiling? I keep saying drop ceiling, mostly because I suspect keeping easy access to all the wires, plumbing etc is a good idea vs a permanent / drywall roof...willing to hear any and all thoughts or options here. "Paint it black..." like you see in commercial spaces? (You can see a lot of this is actually paper side of insulation facing down, not sure painting that is great idea but...could in theory say tack up black fabric or? To replace the piping/ductwork here you are seeing...is that HUGE money, sorta huge, $100, $1000, $2000? In theory, WAAAAY back in the day I helped hang drop ceilings...like 1988 or something, we used laser to give us a line around the room, I remember that and then basically attaching to rafter and "tieing off" the base at that height..dropping panels in and cutting some to fit odd corners and such. What say ye?